Trump Administration Rolls Back Obama-Era Fuel Standards

 Alan Neuhauser

THE TRUMP administration on Thursday followed through on its promise to revoke tighter vehicle fuel economy standards set under President Barack Obama.

The move, which was widely expected, will now require automakers to achieve an average 37 miles per gallon fleetwide for cars and light-duty trucks by 2025, replacing the Obama-era standard of 54.5 mpg.

Acting Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Andrew Wheeler has said the administration will also aim to undo California's authority to set its own vehicle efficiency standards, which are typically stricter than those set by the EPA.

"We are delivering on President Trump's promise to the American public that his administration would address and fix the current fuel economy and greenhouse gas emissions standards," Wheeler said in a statement. "Our proposal aims to strike the right regulatory balance based on the most recent information and create a 50-state solution that will enable more Americans to afford newer, safer vehicles that pollute less."

Auto industry executives had lobbied the Trump administration to roll back the fuel economy standards, though they have more recently been silent about the change in the face of opposition from consumer and environmental groups. Automakers had initially joined the Obama administration in supporting the tighter measures when announced in 2011, following negotiations that had lowered the proposed new standard from 62 to 54.5 mpg.

In the wake of Thursday's announcement, California Gov. Jerry Brown, a Democrat, vowed to oppose the administration's effort to eliminate the exemption for California, which was granted by Congress when it passed the Clean Air Act.

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Domain: Afterhours
Category: Auto
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